NEW DELHI: Indian police on Friday arrested a 21-year-old man suspected of raping and severely damaging the eyes of a six-year-old girl from his village, the latest in a series of grim sex attacks in the country.
The accused lured the girl towards an empty cattle shed under the pretext of offering her sweets before raping her on Thursday, said Hemant Chauhan, police chief of the Damoh district of Madhya Pradesh state where the village lies.
Police had been looking for the girl after her parents reported her missing. They found her lying unconscious inside the shed with her hands tied, Chauhan said.
“This was an extremely brutal attack,” said Chauhan. “Both her eyes had been pressed and damaged brutally by the man while he forced himself on her.
“One wonders what makes a man do something like this,” Chauhan said.
The attack was one of the more brutal sex offences in recent times and shows how the country continues to struggle to curb such violence despite enacting tougher laws.
A rape occurs every 20 minutes, on average, in the country of 1.3 billion people, according to federal data.
The girl was recovering in hospital and her situation was stable, Chauhan said.